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Dannon Activia's Health Claims False? WTF?!

Dannon Activia's Health Claims False? WTF?!

A newly filed proposed class action suit is accusing Dannon Co Inc of creating a massive false advertising campaign that convinces consumers to pay more for Activia — yogurt containing "probiotic" bacteria — because of the product's health benefits.

The lawsuit refers to scientific reports showing, counter to Dannon's advertising, that there is no real or "clinical" evidence that the bacteria prevents illness or is beneficial to healthy adults. What's more? The suit says that Dannon's own studies failed to support its advertised claims and that the company was aware of it the whole time.

OK, what now? I, for one, buy Activia a lot. Not only do I like its smaller size in comparison to other yogurt containers, but I also thought I was doing great things for my gut, but it is definitely a bit pricier. I'm going to be holding off for a bit and sticking to other brands of yogurt that aren't facing class action suits, but boy, what a bummer.


Reyeuro Reyeuro 8 years
I am 61 years old and have suffered from diverticulitis for many years and have needed metamucil, recently I started using Dannon Activa Light, along with a diet of fresh fruits and vegetables...After 3 months I no longer use metamucil I am more regular then I have been in a very long time, while I have always enjoyed the benefits of fresh fruits and vegetables the Activa has added something beneficial to my digestive system and I swear by it!
nadja123 nadja123 8 years
what is so funny is yes dannon is actually gettin away with this if you eat regula yogurt for the same lenght of time it does the same thing the claim that they have a special ingredient called bifidus regularis or something like that not sure of the exact name they are using but if you look on a regular yogurt package that ingredient is there it just has the clinical name which is an active culture called B. Bifidum which is the same bacteria that activia is trying to caim that they have and no one else does so save yourself some money and get the cheaper stuff
LynneF4611 LynneF4611 9 years
Activia Light is still a great tasting yogurt with real fruit and no high fructose corn syrup. There isn't really that much of a price difference and it does provide as much benefit as any other live active culture yogurt to keep your digestive system moving well. I didn't think it was a miracle drug, but it is good so I'll keep buying it. I just hope that they don't stop making it.
addiepi addiepi 9 years
Pretty much all yogurt has probiotics (little critters in your intestines that help you digest stuff) and active cultures. That's what turns it into yogurt. That is also why lactose intolerant suckers, like me, can usually eat yogurt without nasty after effects. I've always kinda thought their marketing was a lot of hype over something that all yogurt has, but, I'll admit out of hope and a deep longing for consequence-free dairy, I eat the stuff pretty regularly. Maybe I'll just switch to kefir until this is all settled, maybe not.
adry_long adry_long 9 years
In terms of the class action lawsuit, I wanted to note that I took a look at the activia website (as linked by Michael Neuwirth in his post above). They have the "take the 2 week challenge" advertisement claiming if you don't see any results after two weeks of eating activia, you get your money back (up to $12). I would think that if the claims are false and you don't see results, that's all you're entitled to. Especially, since it's mentioned in their commercials/advertisements. It would be interesting to find out how many people have actually contacted Danon for their money back after taking this "challenge" and if they have actually been successful at getting their money back.
Silvers567 Silvers567 9 years
SO glad someone finally filed a lawsuit... I see my coworkers eating this stuff like crazy, when all it is is glamorized yogurt, and it has all sorts of yucky ingredients too! Activia will give you the same benefits of any yogurt. Kefir actually has 10 times as much bacteria in it, it was recently dubbed one of the new "superfoods". It comes in all kinds of flavors, some with no sugar, and organic varieties. Try it out!
adry_long adry_long 9 years
I buy this brand often...and even though there is a lawsuit against them or it has some sugar (god forbid), I can at least feel better about eating it instead of stuffing my face with a cupcake or a cookie. It helps satisfy my craving for sweets.
ella1978 ella1978 9 years
I don't really love yougurt, but I LOVE cottage cheese. They make a "Danactive" cottage cheese that is supposed to have the same effects. That stuff made me soooo sick. By day three it felt like I had the flu, but day four I was immobile, stomach cramps, etc. I've shyied away from all of that stuff since...
Allytta Allytta 9 years
:D well, this is the benefit of getting great education in the EU - we were thought that danone this about good bacteria is BS. Actually yogurt is made out of bacteria, otherwise its still be milk, but it is all just PR. But i still love it, it's the best tasting yogurt in the UK and is almost the same price. i eat every day :D jeez, i sound like a advert myself, but it's good. i tried new organic yogurt recently and the fruit bits were strange colour, strange shape and strange everything. the same goes to lal the other yogurts. i once bought a strawberry one and it was green!!!!! ew... danone never does that, and they have all these sales and discounts.
GrapeBubbleGum GrapeBubbleGum 9 years
I saw an ad for activia today and they made a point to list the number of studies that back their claim that it aids in digestion...maybe this is in response to the criticisms? I found it interesting. I don't eat the stuff though. I go the fiber-route to keep my digestive system in check. I make my own yogurt. That way I don't have to worry about too much sugar or anything. It's plain, but I sweeten it and flavor it before I eat it.
michaelneuwirth michaelneuwirth 9 years
I want to give you Dannon's position about this lawsuit - I work for Dannon. All of Dannon's claims for Activia and DanActive are completely supported by peer-reviewed science and are in accordance with all laws and regulations. Dannon's advertising is and will continue to be absolutely truthful, and Dannon will vigorously challenge this lawsuit. If you'd like to hear both sides of this story check out the scientific evidence on our websites ( and as well as a statement about the lawsuit at []. I hope this is helpful info. Michael Neuwirth, Sr. Director of Public Relations, The Dannon Company
taratootie taratootie 9 years
Marileejean... I stand by my statement, but what I meant for you to take away from that is that ALL yogurt is beneficial for your digestive flora. If it is out of whack, any yogurt will help you! Dannon's claim about B.regularis being BETTER than any other strain of bactaria is bunk though. Its just a lab strain they toyed with to patent the name... a different way to market something to the consumer. It wont hurt you, but you will waste a few bucks! The important thing is that anyone IS eating yogurt, which is a good source of good bacteria, calcium and protein! If you find one that you like and works for you then eat up! I tend to stick with my lowfat, plain stuff and add some fruit and buckwheat honey or agave nectar. Mmmm... well now that I think about it I should tell you all that homemade yogurt is **awesome**!!! Keep an eye on my profile and I should have pics of making it up in a few days!!! Happy eating.
fireannach fireannach 9 years
I always stick to plain non-fat yogurt, and keep a supply of fruits and berries that I like to throw in with a tablespoon of honey. One of my favorite snacks!
insanitypepper insanitypepper 9 years
I like Breakstone's Live Active cottage cheese. It's definitely not too sweet. I can't bring myself to like yogurt, unless it's the plain, unsweetened variety.
ElectroPopTart ElectroPopTart 9 years
I say, eat lowfat or nonfat PLAIN yogurt with added REAL fruit or jelly. It's better for you without all that sugar and processed junk. I, for one, eat non fat yogurt with some walnuts.
kiddylnd kiddylnd 9 years
Okay, I just looked up the sugar content for the Activa Lite and Yoplait Lite and the Activa comes in at 9g and the Yopliat at 14 (and it's 2 oz more in serving size). It's 17 & 27 respectively for the regular versions. I realize that all the more 'natural' varieties have less sugar, but I don't know why everyone is knocking the sugar on the Activa when the Yoplait is about the same. The Stonyfield Lite is 24, regular 26. Mountain High comes in at 28 for Lite and 27 for regular. It's also probably the difference between sugar alcohol and regular sugar? I'm just sayin'...
Kkkkkkkkkkk Kkkkkkkkkkk 9 years
Bella, and everyone else who commented on the high sugar content, I read somewhere that one small bottle of Yakult... the original probiotic yogurt drink... contains 8 spoons of sugar!! Apparently the cultures that are added to them are so unbelievably foul tasting that they require that much sugar to mask the taste. Not such a great, healthy way to start your day after all. You might as well treat yourself to a pastry and a latte instead!
peachesmel9 peachesmel9 9 years
Shortly after this product appeared on the market I read an article stating that the cultures used in the study were administered at over twice the amount daily to invoke the effect that Dannon was claiming. So essentially you would have to eat at least two of the cartons per day to feel any real benefit. I do like the taste of these, but that's really just because of the high sugar content. As with a lot of other single-serving yogurts out there, there is way more added sugar than necessary.
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